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Messages - Taaroa

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I feel like now is an ideal time to go into Los Angeles and start doing Person-on-the-Street interviews about what they've heard about what's happening in Antarctica.
How many people there would even know what Antarctica is?

Most over-rated director in the history of film. Quentin Tarantino James Cameron by a mile.
I'd probably say Wes Anderson would be most overrated.

Honourable mentions: Baz Luhrmann, George Miller, JJ Abrams, Joss Whedon.

Random Topics / Re: Weird Geographical Information
« on: Yesterday at 02:34:52 AM »
Malacca Strait

Another important shipping area is the Strait of Hormuz through which 20% of the world's petroleum is carried by tankers. It provides the only sea passage between the Persian Gulf, and is only 54km (33.5mi) wide at its narrowest. The strategic situation of the strait has been compared to that of the Dardenelles (between the Mediterranean and Black Sea) under the Ottoman Empire which was a chokepoint for Russian grain shipments. It is bordered by Oman, the United Arab Emirates, and Iran.

The strait has been the site of a great deal of conflict since the 1980s mainly involving Iran and the United States:

-During the Iran-Iraq War, Iran mined the Persian Gulf. In April 1988 the USS Samuel B. Roberts struck a mine while escorting Kuwaiti oil tankers, and had to be towed to Dubai. The US launched Operation Praying Mantis in retaliation, attacking Iranian oil platforms and forces in what was the the US Navy's largest surface engagement since WW2. At the end of the operation, half of Iran's fleet was either destroyed or severely damaged.
-In July 1988, 290 people were killed when an Iranian civilian airliner was shot down over the strait by the US Navy.
-In January 2007 the USS Newport News struck a Japanese crude tanker while submerged.
-in January 2008 the US accused Iranian ships of harassing their own, a charge which Iran denied. Later in the year Iran's Revolutionary Guard made an announcement that if Israel or the United States attacked Iran that the strait would be sealed and oil shipping disrupted.
-In 2015 Iran fired shots across the bridge of a container ship and directed it further into Iranian waters where it was seized. This was due to a dispute between the country and the shipping company Maersk.

Due to concerns about conflict around the strait, a number of countries have began to construct oil pipelines to bypass it. Saudi Arabia has reactivated a pipeline to the Red Sea seized from Iraq and is considering building more to Oman and Yemen, while the UAE has opened a pipeline connecting Abu Dhabi and Fujairah on the Gulf of Oman.

Random Topics / Re: Music
« on: Yesterday at 01:38:12 AM »

have yet to watch Hateful 8...heard mixed things about it..Django was solid..
Certainly not his best film, but it was still enjoyable. I saw one of the 70mm film screenings which had more shots and different editing, but the thing I remember most is a woman going to an usher and complaining about how tall I am after giving me dirty looks for daring to sit in my pre-booked seat.  ::)

Random Topics / Re: Weird Geographical Information
« on: April 23, 2017, 07:19:31 PM »
The Morning Glory cloud is a rare low level atmospheric wave and associated cloud which is only known to appear somewhat regularly over the southern part of the Gulf of Carpentaria from late September to early November. It is a roll cloud which can be 1000km (620mi) long, 1-2km (.62-1.24mi) high, 330-660ft off the ground, and travels at a speed of 10-20m/s. They are best witnessed in Burketown just after dawn.

The phenomenon was first witnessed by Royal Australian Airforce pilots during WW2, and today is a popular target of glider pilots. Due to their rarity they don't have much significance to rainfall or the climate, and as a result have not been studied to too great an extent. It has been proposed that the clouds form as a result of sea breezes which develop over Cape York and the Gulf of Carpentaria in addition to frontal and high pressure systems.

The clouds have been rarely observed on satellite images over the Joseph Bonaparte Gulf and Arabian Sea, but have also occasionally reported in the Gulf of California and Nova Scotia.

Gulf of Carpentaria trivia:

-The Gulf of Carpentaria was the destination of the 1860 Burke and Wills expedition to cross the continent from Melbourne at a time when much of the inland was unexplored. Although they reached their destination, the return journey was disastrous and resulted in the deaths of seven men (including Burke and Wills) with only one man having survived the entire expedition.
-In 2006 an 80m long ship whose origin is a mystery was spotted by border patrol aircraft adrift in the Gulf of Carpentaria approximately 180km south west of Weipa. There was no indication of recent human activity on board the vessel, or that it had been abandoned in distress. The only item of note on board was a large quantity of rice, but otherwise the ship appeared to have been stripped of any identifying features or documentation.

Politics / Re: Random Political Thoughts
« on: April 23, 2017, 03:58:00 AM »

Random Topics / Re: Random stupid things on your mind. Post them.
« on: April 23, 2017, 03:42:18 AM »

Random Topics / Re: Weird Geographical Information
« on: April 22, 2017, 04:01:21 AM »
A lake overturn (aka limnic eruption) is a very rare type of natural disaster in which dissolved gases (eg CO₂) suddenly erupts from the deep waters in a lake which then forms a deadly toxic gas cloud, and are possibly accompanied by tsunamis as a result of the water displacement. Possible triggers for it to occur are varied but include landslides, earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, rain storms, or even wind. Although there is evidence of one of these natural disasters occurring in Germany in the ancient past, due to the requisite features of the lakes where it could occur there are only three known lakes where it could occur today (but there could possibly be more). These lakes are:

Lake Monoun
This is a lake in West Province, Cameroon in the Oku volcanic region. In August 1984 it is believed that a limnic eruption occurred late at night/in the early morning which killed 37 people. Victims had skin discolouration, and survivors reported a bitter smelling white cloud but the cause of the deaths was not known until two years later when the previously unseen phenomena occurred again.

Lake Nyos
This is a lake approximately 100km (62mi) northwest of Lake Monoun and 315km (196mi) northwest of Cameroon's capital Yaoundé, also in the Oku volcanic region. In August 1986 it is believed a landslide triggered a limnic eruption to occur, with the CO₂ gas which escaped displacing oxygen and suffocating 1746 people and 3500 livestock within 25km (16mi) of the lake. Scientists believed that during the event a 100m (330ft) high fountain of foam and water formed, and that the resulting turbulence triggered a 25m (82ft) tall wave which destroyed vegetation. The normally blue waters turned red, and the water level dropped by 1m.

Lake Kivu
Lake Kivu is a large lake sitting on the border between Rwanda and the Democratic Republic of Congo with an estimated surface area covering 2700 km² (1040mi²), a maximum depth of 475m (1558ft), and a mean depth of 220m (722ft). Evidence has been found around the lake of large scale biological extinctions roughly every 1000years, with lake overturns being the main suspect. Any modern limnic eruption here would be catastrophic, as approximately 2million people live in the vicinity. Concern is particularly great as there are active volcanoes nearby the lake which could trigger such an overturn.

Following research into the 1984 and 1986 disasters, scientists have attempted to 'degas' or vent the lakes of the dangerous gasses before they can pose a risk using pumps and pipes. Due to the large size of Lake Kivu such endeavors are much harder and an equivalent project to remove the gases (ie CO₂ and methane) has not been initiated, but local governments have started extracting the methane in the lake for export and power generation.

Correction: dumb/crazy leftist guest, some of them quite mainstream.
Doesn't mean he's not cherrypicking easy targets to tear apart.


So is Tucker Carlson deliberately getting dumb/crazy guests, or are these types of guest par for the course with his show?

Random Topics / Re: Weird Geographical Information
« on: April 21, 2017, 11:42:06 PM »
I had a bonzai tree for several years that looked similar to a baobob as far the trunk. It was some type of Australian tree that was highly drought resistant. One too many business TDYs without someone to water it finally did it in.
There are Australian trees that look like that, but I wouldn't have thought they'd be small enough for bonzai stuff. Some were large enough that they were used as prison cells:

The last Western I watched was Il Mercenario/The Mercenary, which is about a Polish mercenary participating in the Mexican Revolution. Has a soundtrack by Ennio Morricone and a pretty good duel scene.

I just finished watching second season of the Expanse. Probably not as good as the first season, but still the best scifi show since the Battlestar Galactica remake. The actress of one of the new main characters isn't particularly good, but she did improve a bit before the end of the season. CGI certainly looks better.

Random Topics / Re: Random stupid things on your mind. Post them.
« on: April 21, 2017, 11:18:38 PM »
Remember awhile back, some restaurant tried to disallow kids below a certain age from eating there.  It was immediately picked up by the nat'l news as "anti-children" or some such hysteria.

Happened too when an airline proposed areas of or whole planes to be only available to people above a certain age.

Random Topics / Re: Video Gaming
« on: April 21, 2017, 06:33:19 AM »
for anyone who cares..Saints Row 2 is free on both Steam and GoG for at least today
I recall that having issues running on Windows 7 and onwards.

Thanks for the info though, still gonna download it.

Random Topics / Re: Where was your worst public bathroom experience?
« on: April 20, 2017, 01:44:52 AM »
Finally they leave and I got into the bathroom and someone, or more than one, was using the shut-off shitter and it was piled up. AND there was no paper in that stall (since we weren't using it.) After gagging. I then thought: what dirty people who would crap in a non-working toilet and using no paper etc? Then I thought did they leave and say to themselves "what backwards people these gweilos to not even have paper or a working toilet?

When I went to university a certain number of bathrooms had a few of the asian style squat toilets, and there almost always was some kind of visible mess in those stalls. Then in the normal bathrooms they had signs up instructing people how to use western toilets and telling them not to squat on those. Apparently people just ignored the signs, because you'd see footprints on the toilet seat sometimes.

Also not a public bathroom story as such, but I did once upon a time see a pilot pee into a bottle during a long ferry flight. He then opened the storm window (it's a small window in some cockpits which you can barely put your hand through) and attempted to pour it out, only for it to all blow back onto him.

Random Topics / Re: Where was your worst public bathroom experience?
« on: April 19, 2017, 10:44:39 PM »
Not the worst experience but one that left me scratching my head.  I went into the restroom at an insurance company and found two empty candy wrappers on one of the urinals.  I wondered if he enjoyed the treats before, during or after a piss.  Was the piss so long as to require sustenance?  Were the treats used to lure someone into an illicit tryst?  I tried to figure out who did it all day to no avail.

Reminds me of the time I saw a guy pissing at a urinal while slowly eating a sandwich and moaning.

Random Topics / Re: Weird Geographical Information
« on: April 19, 2017, 12:43:57 PM »
Nan Madol
Nan Madol is a ruined city in a lagoon adjacent to the coast of Pohnpei in the Federated States of Micronesia, consisting of artificial islands linked by canals. The core of the city contains approximately 100 of these islets and is surrounded by a stone wall.
The name Nan Madol means "spaces between" and refers to the canals, however at one point the name was Soun Nan-leng which meant "Reef Heaven".

It is believed the area began to be settled around 100AD, but carbon dating indicates the megalithic construction didn't start until 1180AD.
The city was the ceremonial and political center of the Saudeleur Dynasty which ruled Pohnpei until 1628 when they were overthrown by external invaders. It was primarily a residence for nobility and religious figures with some islands having special designated purposes such as canoe construction, food preparation, tombs, and coconut oil preparation.

There are no food or water sources within the city and during the Saudeleur Dynasty it was all brought in via boat. Following their overthrow the remaining inhabitants struggled to maintain these supplies and it's thought that this contributed to the eventual abandonment of the city


Random Topics / Re: Weird Geographical Information
« on: April 19, 2017, 07:57:22 AM »
Point Nemo / 48° 52′ 36″S 123° 23′ 36″W
The oceanic pole of inaccessibility (also known as Point Nemo) is the place in the ocean that is farthest from land. It is located in the South Pacific Ocean 2,688 km (1,670 mi) from the nearest land. The name "Point Nemo" is a reference to the Jules Verne character Captain Nemo, and the location was featured in the works of H.P. Lovecraft.

The area is relatively lifeless as the remoteness from land means there is little to no nutrient run-off from the coast, and the South Pacific Gyre (basically a system of circulating ocean currents) further blocks nutrients from reaching the area.

The area can also be considered somewhat of a 'spacecraft cemetery' as decommissioned satellites, rockets, boosters, and space stations are aimed at Point Nemo during reentry to prevent injury or damage to inhabited areas. The most famous of these objects is perhaps the Soviet space station Mir, which was deliberately deorbited to hit here in 2001.

Random Topics / Re: Music
« on: April 19, 2017, 01:17:52 AM »

Random Topics / Re: Music
« on: April 19, 2017, 12:08:41 AM »

Politics / Re: President Donald J. Trump
« on: April 18, 2017, 10:59:33 AM »
Well he died happy.

Trump saying on twatter the Dem candidate in GA would put taxes up, eliminate healthcare, and numerous other things he can't do, shouldn't get media attention, but it did.  :)
At least Trump and whoever the candidate is are public figures and an argument could be made that whatever they say on social media might be something the public would be interested in. Story I linked had no merit whatsoever - a woman lying to her husband is probably pretty common and unremarkable - but the whole thing seemed like clickbait pandering to the anti-Trump crowd.
I also disliked the story about Melania reminding Trump to put his hand on his chest during the national anthem, but I guess Americans are funny about stuff like that and would be interested.

Politics / Re: President Donald J. Trump
« on: April 18, 2017, 10:14:06 AM »

Random Topics / Re: United Breaks Guitars (and Senior citizens.)
« on: April 18, 2017, 10:08:26 AM »
An Illinois lawmaker on Monday introduced a bill to ban the forcible removal of travelers from flights by state or local government employees after a United Airlines passenger was dragged from an aircraft last week.

I'm sure such a move couldn't possibly backfire or cause disruptions.  ::)

Random Topics / Re: Music
« on: April 18, 2017, 08:42:30 AM »

Random Topics / Re: Weird Geographical Information
« on: April 18, 2017, 06:48:32 AM »
Gisborne Airport in New Zealand is one of the few airports in the world where an active railway line crosses the runway. Aircraft landing on the main runway are signaled with two red flashing lights on either side of the runway and a horizontal bar of flashing red lights to indicate the runway south of the railway line is closed, and that they may only land on the section of the runway north of the railway line. When the full length of the runway is open a vertical bar of green lights indicates this to aircraft, while rail signals on the Palmerston North–Gisborne Line instruct trains to stop.

The other airports which include a railway line crossing the runway are:
-Manakara Airport in Madagascar, crossed by the Fianarantsoa-Côte Est railway

-Bacha Khan International Airport in Peshawar Pakistan, crossed by the Khyber Steam Safari railway running to Khyber Pass (possibly now closed)

Random Topics / Re: Hardest questions to answer
« on: April 18, 2017, 01:30:33 AM »
Coke or Pepsi?

Coke, but Pepsi is fine too. Dr Pepper is not acceptable under any circumstances.

LOL.  Well if American Coke would shift back to using cane sugar instead of corn syrup as the sweetener and offered their product in glass bottles larger than 10 oz, I might shift back.  I can't drink Coke from plastic bottles anymore though occasionally I'll drink a 12 oz can of coke classic.

I found Coke and Pepsi in the US tasted relatively flat. I knew it was going to be different than what I'm used to, but I didn't expect it to be that bad.
There's a store here catering to Ameican expats, but they don't carry American Coke instead selling the Mexican stuff. Tried it and didn't think much of it, but I don't get the point of selling it when our local stuff uses cane sugar anyway.

Random Topics / Re: Star Trek: Discovery
« on: April 17, 2017, 09:54:36 PM »
There's a link to a video in the comments that I haven't had a chance to watch, but if it's similar to things I've seen / read about CBS seriously screwing with the production and turning the story into complete nonsense it doesn't bode well.
Here's the video:

To me the show didn't sound like it was going to be good right from the start, but I guess we'll see.

Random Topics / Re: Weird Geographical Information
« on: April 17, 2017, 01:01:29 PM »
Neft Daşları / Нефтяные Камни
Neft Daşları (meaning Oily Rocks) is a settlement and offshore oil platform in the Caspian Sea 34mi from shore and 62mi east of Azerbaijan's capital Baku.

Neft Daşları is visible on the extreme right in this satellite image

Construction of Neft Daşları began to be built in 1949 by the Soviets to exploit an oil deposit under the sea, and in doing so became the world's first offshore oil platform. More platforms were built (some using sunken ships as a base to build upon) and in 1952 bridges began to be constructed to connect them to each other. By the 1960s these bridges were ~120mi in length and the settlement area grew to 7ha. Dormitories, water treatment plants, and power stations were soon built.

Today it is a fully fledged town with an average population of 2000, 190mi of streets, hotels, shops, workshops, and factories. People might recognise Neft Daşları as the site of a scene and filming location from the 1999 Bond film The World is Not Enough.


Random Topics / Re: Weird Geographical Information
« on: April 17, 2017, 07:50:53 AM »
Western Sahara "longests"
The longest conveyer belt in the world transports phosphate from mines inland at Boucraa 61mi (98km) to the port of El Ayun on the Atlantic coast. The belt is visible on satellite images from the dust blown off of it by desert winds.

The conveyer belt, mines, and port are all in the disputed territory of Western Sahara which is partially occupied/controlled by Morocco, giving the country control of nearly three quarters of the world's phosphate reserves. No UN members recognise Morocco's sovereignty over the territory and there is an active rebel movement against their control, however the effectiveness of it has decreased due to ceasefires, more reluctant foreign backing, and a series of fortifications created by Morocco.

The fortifications which were mainly constructed in the 1980s are known as the 'Moroccan Wall' - an approximately 1700mi long wall separating Moroccan occupied Western Sahara from the Polisario controlled areas, extending slightly into Mauritania and Morocco proper. The typical height of the wall is 10ft, lying in mostly uninhabited regions and enchanced with fences, bunkers, radar installations, and airfields. The landmine belt running along the barrier is thought to be the longest continuous minefield in the world.

Western Sahara also claims to have one of the longest cargo trains in the world, with 3km long Mauritanian trains passing through the territory while hauling iron ore.

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